UPMC Physician Resources
3000th Heart and Lung Transplant
UPMC Cardiothoracic Transplantation
3,000 Transplants—Second in the world, first in the region.
The Heart Transplant Program at UPMC is one of only a few programs in the country with heart recipients now nearing or beyond 30 years post-transplant, and the Lung Transplant Program at UPMC is one of the most recognized and experienced centers in the world for lung and combined heart-lung transplantation. As we reach a significant milestone with our 3,000th heart, lung, or heart-lung transplant, the surgeons and specialists at UPMC Transplantation Services are honored to have earned the trust of patients and their families from across 43 states and nine countries.
Since the inception of our Heart and Lung Transplant programs in the early 1980s, our team of cardiothoracic transplant experts has performed 3,000 heart, lung, or heart-lung transplants, re-establishing UPMC as a pioneer in the field of transplantation.
UPMC acts as a regional and national resource for new cardiac recovery and replacement technologies. Collaboration with McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine basic scientists and engineers in the fields of molecular cardiology, genetics, and engineering enables UPMC heart failure specialists to develop new technologies and therapies. This partnership gives UPMC clinicians access to the latest in cardiac assist device designs, such as the Heartmate II® rotary pump, co-designed at the McGowan Institute. Also under study are new assist devices that can be implanted through arteries and veins without requiring major surgery.
Important areas of research in heart transplantation and ventricular assist device therapy include enhancing myocardial recovery while undergoing ventricular assist device therapy, or “bridge to transplant,” in addition to the development and expanded use of polyclonocal and monoclonal antibodies to counteract steroid-resistant rejection.
In terms of lung transplant efforts, UPMC researchers have been at the forefront of efforts to develop novel immunosuppressive regimens, including induction lymphodepletion and the use of inhaled cyclosporine to minimize rejection and improve long-term outcomes in lung patients. These regimens also help to decrease the drugs’ toxicity.
Our long history of transplantation excellence is what allows us to treat patients considered too high-risk by other institutions, and meet or exceed national averages, while providing the best possible pre- and post-transplant care for our patients. Our program remains one of only a few in the country with donor heart recipients at or beyond 30 years posttransplant.
Elite Team of Experts
Our team of heart and lung surgeons, cardiologists, pulmonologists, nurse coordinators and the rest of our staff remain committed to providing a continuum of care from referral to posttransplant discharge. We take pride in in a collaborative approach with referring physicians to ensure that patients are properly taken care of, whether or not they are candidates for transplantation.